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Delhi close to issuing city-wide Wi-Fi tender

Google, Facebook, Cisco et al ready for RFP feeding frenzy

In spite of being under investigation by India's competition regulator, Google has been named among the vendors vying to build Delhi's planned city-wide Wi-Fi network.

The network would ultimately need to support around 20 million devices in the city.

The Economic Times has identified the Chocolate Factory as one of a laundry-list of outfits that are waiting for the city to issue a tender for the build.

An anonymous government official told the newspaper that Google, Facebook (also suffering criticism in India over its “walled garden” mobile service), Cisco, Aruba, Ericsson, and Vodafone have all shown an interest in the project.

That was later confirmed to the outlet by IT parliamentary secretary Adarsh Shastri. Shastri added that with 2 crore (20 million) devices in Delhi, the Wi-Fi network would represent a “huge database.”

The Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government's RFP is now awaiting sign-off.

The Competition Commission of India is investigating Google over whether it skews search results in its own favour.

Facebook, meanwhile, loosened its walled-garden approach to the free service, only to run into criticism for banning HTTPS from the network. ®

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